“I was not really a “cool creative” when we first met. I was a rather shy and thoughtful guy who had major doubts about his abilities. It was not clear how I could fit into that rigid system of success.”
Eike König is the founder and creative director of HORT Berlin and professor at Koenigsklasse, HfG Offenbach, University of arts. In a conversation with the Tea & Water communications consultancy he discussed his life history. His farther was an architect and taught König to avoid any decorations, to learn discipline and to work as hard as possible to enable progress. However his grandfather was much stricter and pushed him to learn how to weave carpets and read books from his library, books that illustrated a romantic perspective of his early life as a prisoner of war.
Politics had a very important role in König’s life, with him being a child in the time of the Cold War and his parents being quite interested in the matter. His parents owned many magazines filled with info-graphics describing the state of the world. This intimidated and also fascinated him especially the power of the tiny graphic illustrations. He said that this was one thing that pulled him towards Graphic Design.
Connection between music and Design
“Listening to records was a ritual: removing the record from its sleeve, lowering the needle into the groove, and finding a comfortable spot; then listening to the music and studying the design of the record cover.”
König had a very strong passion for music, that started after discovering ‘StormStudios’ Design agency, formed in the early 1990’s by Storm Thorgerson. They were a team of freelancers, who created designs for many diverse projects including exhibitions, company logos, websites, typefaces, books and airships, and designed album covers for bands such as Pink Floyd, Muse, Biffy Clyro, The Steve Miller Band, Ian Dury And The Blockheads, Pendulum, The Cranberries, The Mars Volta, Alan Parsons and many others.
Some examples of their work.
He also went on to design flyers and posters for various people, Fedi Choukair being one of them, who was connected in the Frankfurt club. From this König gained and internship at logic Records, and then became the labels art director.
“Design was a craft; the perfect communication between brain and hand. All of a sudden I had the opportunity to use cutting edge technology for my work. I was in love with the unlimited potential of this new world.”
He mentioned that his team in HORT is a collection of advisors and consultants that organise process, refine and develop it. They use their design to convey a point of view and that self-confidence is an important aspect of their profession. Their task is to simply develop communication to not only create something beautiful but also something that reflects the needs and given concept.
So is it design or art?
“It’s definitely not fine art. It’s too applied for that. But everyone here at Hort is very interested in art. We enjoy reading about art strategy and art concepts.”
“Morag Myerscough puts an eclectic graphic sensibility into public spaces, with colour, pattern and big type.” – Eye Magazine.
Myerscough was born in Holloway, North London in 1963. She was the middle child of three sisters, her mother was a textile designer and her father was a classical musician, what she liked to call a ‘bohemian’ household.
She was always experimenting in art and then decided do a foundation year. She then went on to study Graphic Design at Central Saint Martins in London, where she was inspired by her teachers, Geoff Fowle being the first tutor to see potential in her work. she then went on to do 2 years at the RCA ( Royal Collage of Art). Myerscough developed a double life, working for major agencies during the day and doing freelance illustration by night.
Some of the designers work from SupergroupLondon.
“If you did a poster that’s who you were. But it’s not the object or the thing, it’s the understanding, knowing the nuances of the different shapes and letters and how they read or don’t read. The type is the thing and that’s a big part of being a graphic designer. That will go on forever.”
“As viewers, we tend to want to put things into a box. And that’s the problem with Oded Ezer, and typography at large: You can’t”, Print Magazine.
Ezer is a Graphic artist, typographer and former musician and poet from Jerusalem. He studied graphic design in Bezalel Academy of Art & Design, followed by establishing his own independent studio in 2000. The designer specialises in typographic and font design and by 2004 he started selling his own typefaces to different media companies and design studios.
The video below shows Ezer discussing about typography.
Jessica Walsh is a designer and art director based in New York. She has received numerous distinctions such as Forbes Magazine “30 under 30 top creatives designing the future” and works for clients such as Jay-Z, Barneys, The New York Times, Levi’s, and The Museum of Modern Art, among many others. Her work has won most major design awards and has been featured in numerous books, galleries, museums and magazines worldwide. Her most famous work is the 40 days of Dating project with Timmothy Goodman.
40 Days Of Dating Project
Long time friends Walsh and Goodman both found themselves single at the same time and decided to try an experiment. They both agreed to date each other to test the theory that it takes 40 days to change a habit so can the same be said about love. Both partners kept track of their progress, taking pictures, keeping texts, videos and artworks and then posted the material on a website. The experiment became so popular that a book was created from it.
“At the heart of what we do is a desire to create work that is both explorative and beautifully crafted. Above all else we retain a deeply rooted conviction to not only deliver design that is effective but that exceeds our client’s expectations.”- Sawdust
Here are some examples of their design works for popular companies such as Audi, Nike, Wired, The New York times, Coca-cola and ESPN.
Sawdust is a creative partnership based in London, between Jonathan Quainton and Rob Gonzalez. Both designers specialise in bespoke and innovative typography, brand display typefaces, visual identities and image creation for clients. They have published many books and magazines and received awards of excellence for their unique typography and identity.
HOW DO YOU DO IT
Founder of Hey Studio
Hey studio is a Graphic Design studio based in Barcelona, founded by Veronica Fuerte in 2007. The studio works to show brand identity, editorial Design and illustration whilst also transforming ideas into communicative graphics. According to Fuerte it is a very small studio, with a mix of graphic designers and illustrators. The work they create is mainly very colourful, geometrical with bold graphics.
The company also do side projects that bush creative boundaries and develop a passion that’s injected into clients work, such as,
“Apple, Vodafone, Three, Turkish Airlines, General Electric, Jeremy Maxwell Wintrebert, The Wall Street Journal, Mr. Porter, CBS, Film Commission Chile, Inditex, Fortune Magazine, Design Studio, Monocle, MACBA, CCCB, Penguin Random House and Oxfam.”
“We take care of every single step of the design process and we always work closely with our clients, big or small, in one-to-one relationships.”- Hey
Pfaeffli is a teacher at Fachklasse Grafik Luzern,who started studio Feixen in 2009. He’s also won prizes worldwide and responsible for the necessary chaos in the designs.
“If the medium is the message, then Pfäffli designs with an agile understanding of what works both on paper and on-screen. Rendered page corners, tears, and collage all appear in their digital incarnations, as well as an adherence to traditional print dimensions—visual cues that at once upend and revere the poster format.” – Dwell Magazine.
Studio Fiexen is an independent design studio based in Lucerne Switzerland. The company doesn’t have and particular focuses but they vary between Graphic Design, Interior Design, Fashion Design, Type Design and Animation. The company has worked for agencies such as Nike, Google, Reebok and The New York Times.
“As long as it challenges us, we are interested” -Studio Feixen.